• Interest in the European property market remains high
• Push for a strong Q4 and good year-end figures
• 37,857 participants from 74 countries
A busy three-day trade fair, a full schedule of meetings, all the real-estate decision-makers gathered together in one place, and business talks at every stand: Between October 5 and 7, 2015, EXPO REAL in Munich was once again the No. 1 meeting point for the property sector.
“We already knew that sentiment was good at the moment. But what we have seen here at EXPO REAL in the feedback from the participants is fantastic,” enthused Klaus Dittrich, Chairman & CEO of Messe München. “This trade fair is the place to discuss the burning issues of the day in the property sector: themes such as affordable housing (even more topical in view of the migration situation), digitalization, demographics and changing yield expectations resulting from strong rises in purchase prices.”
These points were also right at the top of the agenda for Dr. Barbara Hendricks, German Federal Minister for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety: “We are facing the biggest housing challenge for decades: How can we create more affordable housing in Germany? We are currently putting together an extensive package of measures to mobilize all state and private-sector options. EXPO REAL is an excellent forum for this.”
All the indicators were good for successful talks at EXPO REAL: The property sector is in good shape and, equally, prospects for the medium term look positive. It is a picture that was also reflected in the figures for EXPO REAL.
37,857 participants (2014: 36,893) from 74 countries came to the 18th edition of the International Trade Fair for Property and Investment—that’s 2.6 percent more than in 2014. This growth clearly shows that EXPO REAL is important for the sector as a regular gathering for exchanging views on topical themes in the real estate sector.
The total number of participants is divided up into 18,985 trade visitors (2014: 18,716) and 18,872 company representatives (2014: 18,177). Among the trade visitors, the international proportion, i.e. from outside Germany, was 28 percent. After Germany, the top ten countries of origin among the visitors were—in this order: UK, Netherlands, Austria, Switzerland, Poland, France, Czech Republic, US, Luxembourg and Spain. Also, for the first time, a delegation from sub-Saharan Africa was welcomed at the show. In the forums program they reported on current urban development projects and the property and capital markets in the countries of sub-Saharan Africa.
One of the key themes at this year’s EXPO REAL was investment in the European, in particular the German market. Claus P. Thomas, International Director/MD at LaSalle Investment Management, Germany, commented: “There is a lot of money in the market at present. The prices are high and yields are low. That is a difficult situation and one that we are all having to face at the moment. This has implications for EXPO REAL, too, as it gains ‘drive’ in two ways: On the one hand, from an international perspective, Germany is still regarded as a ‘safe haven’, and on the other, at the time the fair takes place we all have our year-end figures in mind, so talks at EXPO REAL are always about concrete projects.”
EXPO REAL is the place to meet investors from all over the world, a fact confirmed also by Hugues Parant, CEO at Epadesa, France: “German investors are one of our main target groups. We see that France, particularly Paris-La Défense, is interesting to invest in. That is why we chose to be present at EXPO REAL.” Joseph S. Grubb Jr., Managing Director at HQ Capital Real Estate, US, added: “It’s a good time to invest in the US, therefore EXPO REAL is a great fair where we get to meet our investors. Bringing them together in one place makes the three days very efficient.”
The efficiency offered by EXPO REAL in such a short space of time received special mention from the exhibiting companies. Dr. Franz Jurkowitsch, Chairman of the Management Board at WARIMPEX Finanz- und Beteiligungs AG, Germany, commented: “This is the place we can meet up with the key players and business partners. Three intensive days at EXPO REAL save us a lot of time traveling to individual meetings.” Another exhibitor, convinced of the quality of this event, is Jaap Gillis, CEO at Bouwfonds Investment Management, Netherlands: “For me, EXPO REAL is the working conference in real estate in Europe. All the people I meet have full schedules all day. This means high value for money.”
In total 1,707 (2014: 1,653) exhibitors from 33 countries took part in EXPO REAL 2015. That is three percent higher than in 2014. The proportion of international exhibitors at the show, i.e. from outside Germany, rose again, to 23 percent. After Germany, the top ten countries of origin among the exhibitors were—in this order: Austria, Netherlands, Switzerland, Poland, UK, Romania, Luxembourg, US, France and the Russian Federation.
Dr. Edgar Zoller, Deputy Chief Executive Officer at the Bayerische Landesbank, Germany, summed it up: “EXPO REAL has positioned itself clearly ahead of all other international trade fairs in the property sector.”
The next EXPO REAL takes place from Tuesday, October 4, to Thursday, October 6, 2016, in Munich.